The Clifden Road site was bought for £8.45m and the sale completed yesterday, it has been revealed.

Richmond Council bought the site from Richmond Adult community College (RACC), which currently runs the college from the site in Twickenham.

Contracts were exchanged for the site earlier this year but final completion was subject to a number of conditions, including RACC obtaining necessary Skills Funding Agency consent and the college obtaining approval for additional floor space at its extended site in Parkshot.

However, the decision for the use of the site is mired in a feud between Richmond Council, the British Humanist Association (BHA) and Richmond Inclusive Schools Campaign (Risc), which is to be heard in a judicial review at the High Court.

The council wants to lease parts of the site to the Diocese of Westminster for new Catholic primary and secondary schools.

BHA and Risc want the school’s admissions policy to allow more non-Catholics in but will argue in High Court that the procedure the council followed was unlawful.

As part of the conditions that went with the sale, the college will rent part of the site at a peppercorn rent for two years and, to assist its move to Parkshot, the college will rent a part of Old Deer car park to help construction work.

Councillor Geoffrey Samuel, deputy leader of the council and cabinet member for finance, property and resources, said: “The site will enable a wider diversity of school provision in the Twickenham area and, subject to the ongoing judicial review process, will likely enable us to meet the council’s longstanding wish to see a Catholic secondary school established within the borough.

“I would like to thank the college for its support and work on this deal over the past year and hope that our efforts to support their move to the Parkshot site will assist with improving adult education in the borough even further. This is a good deal for the council, a good deal for the college but most important of all a good deal for education in the borough.”

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